Get the help you need to develop and bring your VR experience to market.
Since 2016, Oculus has invited promising developers from underrepresented backgrounds to get hands-on coaching that helps them meet their VR development goals by joining the Launch Pad program.
Oculus Launch Pad kicks off with a two-day boot camp at Oculus HQ June 23 and 24, where expert instructors will offer hands-on workshops to build up the technical skills you need to tackle the challenges of building a VR prototype.
For the following three months, developers will receive live-streamed educational programming, and join the growing online community of VR developers with coaching from Oculus, Unity, and experienced peers. The program wraps up with an opportunity to compete for Oculus Launch Pad Scholarships, worth up to $250,000!
Now in its third year, Oculus Launch Pad provides women, people of color, members of the LGBTQ community, and people from other underrepresented backgrounds with funding and resources to ensure diversity of thought in the VR ecosystem.
Unity was proud to power many of the 14 winning projects of the Launch Pad 2017 Scholarship contest, which received funding to support their launch as full VR experiences.
[For a full list of winners, see the Oculus 2017 Launch Pad blog]
After the 2017 boot camp with Unity’s own Sarah Stumbo, Launch Pad participants Clorama Dorvilias and Jessica Outlaw connected over a shared interest: how to use VR to reduce cognitive bias. Outlaw’s expertise is in research that studies behavior and culture in VR, and applied to Oculus Launch Pad in 2017 with an interest in de-biasing applications of immersive technology. Dorvilias, bringing experience both in developing VR applications with Unity, also had several years of developing anti-bias projects for clients. After a fateful meet-cute during a shared Lyft ride, the two partnered their matched skills.
After three months in development, they submitted the made with Unity prototype of Teacher’s Pet and won the 2017 Oculus Launch Pad scholarship. The experience, which was brought to market as Teacher’s Lens, leverages the unique capability of Virtual Reality to train teachers to avoid bias through the power of evidence-based gameplay.
After the experience with the Oculus Launch Pad, and empowered through Unity’s technology, Dorvilias established Debias VR, which creates playful and effective evidence-based testing and training apps across industry verticals. These apps that have demonstrated that they help better engage employees, maximize profits, and unlock the proven potential of diverse teams. Outlaw remains a valued partner at Debias VR in an advisory role to ensure the research at the core of Teacher’s Pet continues to meet the highest standards.
VR is a valuable tool that inspires creators, artists, and educators and, via integrated programs like Oculus Launch Pad, reach a broad audience, supporting diversity of thought across the industry. Teacher’s Lens will be available for download on the Oculus Store in May
If you’re ready to share your perspective in games and VR development, the Oculus Launch Pad program will be your opportunity to take on new challenges and develop the skills you need to be at the forefront of emerging technology.